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Rev. Dr. Margaret Mayman

In this podcast Margaret talks about religion and spirituality.

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The podcast, recorded on the 18th of February, 2010, features an interview with Rev. Dr. Margaret Mayman at St Andrew's on the Terrace, Wellington. The interview, conducted by Wai Ho, touches upon the intertwining of LGBTQ+ identities with Christian faith, specifically within the Presbyterian Church. Mayman is the minister at St Andrew's, a church that stands out as an openly welcoming congregation to LGBTQ+ individuals in Wellington.

Mayman, who identifies as a lesbian, has a longstanding relationship with Presbyterianism, rooted in their family's Scottish heritage and upbringing in the local church of Timaru in the South Island. Coming out in their thirties while already a serving minister, Mayman discusses the complex journey of negotiating a queer identity within religious leadership and how their congregation in Christchurch embraced them, albeit not without challenges.

Despite the presence of significant homophobia within broader Christian circles, Mayman's ministry at St Andrew's has been defined by inclusiveness, acceptance, and a supportive space where individuals can explore spirituality alongside their sexuality. Mayman advocates that the intersectionality of faith and LGBTQ+ identity isn't only possible but also enriches the broader community fabric.

Mayman tackles the controversial interpretations of biblical texts that are often used to condemn homosexuality. They offer a perspective that accounts for historical context, arguing that past stances on non-procreative sexual activities—stemming from survival imperatives—no longer hold the same relevance. Mayman highlights that the Bible's silence on economic justice issues is far more significant, underscoring a considerable imbalance in the focus of certain biblical interpretations.

In addition to their ministry, Mayman elucidates the role of St Andrew's as a robust community hub, hosting concerts, lectures, and providing a sanctuary for reflection amidst the bustle of Wellington. Their vision extends to fostering dialogue on pressing contemporary issues encompassing social, environmental, and economic justice. Through such engagements, Mayman sees the church not just as a place for worship but as a platform for critical thinking and societal improvement.

Moreover, Mayman touches on the diversity within the Christian denominations regarding LGBTQ+ inclusiveness, from the varying policies of the Methodist and Anglican Churches to the unspoken realities within the Catholic Church. They note that while places like Wellington provide a safe haven for the LGBTQ+ community, other parts of New Zealand remain less accepting, illustrating the ongoing struggle for equality and recognition.

This summary is created using Generative AI. Although it is based on the recording's transcription, it may contain errors or omissions. Click here to learn more about how this summary was created.

Record date:18th February 2010
Interviewer:Wai Ho
Location:St Andrew's on the Terrace, Wellington
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Archive:The master recording is archived at the Alexander Turnbull Library (OHDL-003848).